The International Karting Commission has a new President, Felipe Massa. Massa’s selection was reached at in the December 2017’s FIA World Motor Sports Council’s meeting held in Paris. Kees van de Grint, a Netherland’s national, would retain his position as the Vice President of the commission.
Felipe Massa succeeds Shaikh Abdulla who successfully headed the commission in a six-year run that started in 2011 and ended in 2017. The outgoing President brought in changes that developed the Karting sport to what it is. Shaikh’s legacy is marked by significant milestones such as the introduction of new OK engines, new front fairing fasteners, improved driver safety, and the lowering of the required driver’s age.
The announcement by the council makes Massa the youngest CIK-FIA President at age 36. Massa’s new position came after he retired from the Formula 1 race track at the end of 2017. This brings to a close his 15-year, racing journey that begun from Karting and ended in a successful F1 racing career. Massa, however, expressed interest in competing in the Brazilian Stock Car Championship as well as the Formula E series but shelved any plans until the kick-start of the 2018-19 all-electric series’ season.
Felipe Massa’s F1 career was crowned with nine successful seasons in the sport including the 2008 Vice-World Championship title. In the same year, he came close to winning the 2008 F1 World Championship but lost the title to Lewis Hamilton in the final race.
Massa hinted at the potential move to the FIA position during his final F1 race in Abu Dhabi. His focus after retirement will be directed to his family and other projects including working to turn around the ailing sport in his country, Brazil. His experience in the sport will be of value to the global Karting Community.